16 September 2013

Goodyyyy! New Home Learning Association!

My social networks, email and ohh, everything are just buzzing with talk of a new, national homeschooling association!  I have to say they've done a great job, PR-wise, on getting the word out.

It's headed by some J. Allen Weston, who has practically zero internet history.  So either he's known by his first name and just decided to use his middle name for the business, or there's something going on there.

That's the first thing.

Next, I decided to take a peek at the place and see what they're about.  Yeah, yeah, lots of exciting talk about helping homeschoolers, national center, massive discounts with the free membership and bla bla bla.  But get this:  they want to "certify" homeschool teachers.  (Just buy these five DVDs.) They also want member families to be "able to earn money by marketing products of HLF affiliated companies such as the Homeland Preservation Supply Depot and Natures Favorite Foods." Article.

This is just the kind of crap I want to get away from by homeschooling!  If I wanted a certified teacher, I could enroll my daughter tomorrow.  And fundraising?  Who really wants to do that?  Bah.

It does show that maybe there's a lot of money to be made from insecure homeschoolers today.

16 comments:

  1. Actually the "teacher certification" course is really a way to help homeschoolers that are having trouble with neighbors and in-laws to have something to show them to get them to back off. It also has hundreds of really good tips for any homeschooling family. So you might want to take a look at it before you get too critical. Also there are many homeschool Moms or Dads that take time away from their jobs to be at home with their kids so they don't have to be exposed to public school. Those families welcome the opportunity to have another home based income source. The Association will be helping them regardless of what business they want to start but for those that would rather not have to start something from scratch, they will be able to work with affiliates of the Association, if they want. Also for kids that would like to raise some money of their own, perhaps to be able to go to a place like "Space Camp", it seems as though having an organization to help them to raise that money would be welcome. I know it is easy to put down new things but this organization took years to put together and it sincerely wants to help homeschoolers of all ages. It is brand new and mistakes will be made but the interest to help is genuine. Many believe that the implementation of the Common Core initiative is partially designed to eventually cause homeschooling to be outlawed. If that is true then having a strong national organization to help fight that battle alongside the HSLDA might be a really good thing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, good luck with that. I'm wary of anyone wanting to do anything that remotely looks like "certifying" homeschoolers, however, thankyouverymuch.

      Also not in the blog post, but rather disconcerting is the fact that your organization is the HLA. A new person looking things up on homeschooling, who doesn't know much of anything yet? Could easily confuse you with HSLDA.

      And I wonder if that isn't accidentally-on-purpose intentional. Left a bad taste in my mouth.

      I looked around a bit on your website and I actually popped over expecting great things, and pretty excited about the idea. I'm usually very supportive of homeschooling organizations of all religions and educational philosophies. This time I'm not. *shrug*

      Delete
  2. I wrote about this a couple of years ago. Don't remember if it was the same company, but found the suggestion of certification distasteful. When I read the following lines: "But get this: they want to "certify" homeschool teachers. (Just buy these five DVDs.) They also want member families to be "able to earn money by marketing products of HLF affiliated companies such as the Homeland Preservation Supply Depot and Natures Favorite Foods." , I audibly screamed. People came running. NOT. GOOD. It might be fun to sick HSLDA on them. That would keep them both busy for a while!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'm sorry that we didn't make the cut for you and the HLA, HSLDA reference was not intentional. We don't think the term Home School is really the best way to describe what we do anymore since the term school has such a bad connotation these days. We also weren't sure we even liked the word "Home" anymore since most real learning takes place out in the world. But we clearly wanted people to understand what we are about, hence the name. As for the "certification" of homeschool teachers, we are very much against that as well and once we are big enough and strong enough we will help fight to get rid of any laws that require it but the fact is that our society is still very hung up on "credentials" and a lot of homeschoolers are still fighting heavy criticism from in-laws, neighbors, etc. that simply don't understand. So this "course" is to try and give people a little ammunition when dealing with the nay-sayers. The content is excellent and should help solve some of those issues. If you think that there are things that we could put on our site or ways that we can improve what we are doing we would be very much interested in such ideas. We are clearly going to make some mistakes along the way but we are here to stay and we sincerely want to help homeschoolers as much as we can. Our family has done it for 17 years now and we know the challenges.

    ReplyDelete
  4. "As for the "certification" of homeschool teachers, we are very much against that as well .... So this "course" is to try and give people a little ammunition when dealing with the nay-sayers."

    Who cares what nay-sayers, neighbors, and the like think. Like the HSLDA this "organization" is seeking to make money off of scared homeschooling parents. Ps. When did homeschooling get a negative connotation.. or a more negative connotation than before?

    I don't know about this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, he was saying the term "school" has a negative connotation. Which... it does to some people. So does "homeschooling" or "stay at home mother" or... just about anything you can think of. I have never heard of "terra schooling" before, though, have you?

      Delete
  5. Happy... if I had your phone number, I'd call you right now. My blood vessels are popping!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I KNOW, right!!! I gotta go to chess, or I'd email ya. lol

      Delete
  6. I just wanted to let you know that we agree with you and we have decided to remove any reference to certification from the DVD course. The 10 hours of tips, concepts and inspiration are wonderful and we don't want people to get the wrong impression about it so it will now just be the "Homeschool Teacher Course". I want to thank you for bringing this mistake to our attention as we felt that adding the word "Certification" might open a can of worms but so many of the people that have contacted us genuinely want a way to get usually grandparents or in-laws to leave them alone. We thought this would help but we see now that the Course can accomplish the same thing without being labeled as such. By the end of the day all reference to "certification" will be removed from the site. Also we agree about having people sell products of our affiliates. I know that there are many people who would like to have a small business at home that they can generate some extra income from and they have no idea where to start so we thought we could connect them with a couple companies that could help them get a start. But there is no reason that we need to promote that. If someone contacts us and asks for suggestions then we can mention those as options but we don't need to have them on our site. All references to those will also be gone by the end of the day as well. So, thank you again for bringing these mistakes to our attention. If you can think of anything else that maybe we should look at I would welcome an email.

    ReplyDelete
  7. This is a very good deal!! I would absolutely want to tell my family and others who doubt my ability to teach my children that *I* can do this because I am a schmuck and bought 5 DVD's that tell me how to do it. THAT, and the fact that the poor grammar on the site, as well as the poor grammar in J. Weston's replies tell me that I am buying DVD's from educated folk who can learn me well. Why wouldn't my family feel I am a genius when they see the lack of punctuation, as well as run on sentences advertising this product, then knowing I was silly enough to purchase it to feel smart?

    This was a really good laugh, and after the last few days, I really needed it.

    J. Weston, when you finish trying to scam the nervous homeschoolers, if you could come up with a confidence boosting DVD set on how to be a mechanic, I am sure some sheeple would buy that, too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The DVDs are a lower price if you become a member, though. It's a $40 value, Potty! A $40 value!!

      Ok, I watched Spongebob today.

      Delete
  8. Of course they are! Who wouldn't want to become a member? That's genius. It's like a secret society!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you don't become a member, you don't get the super-amazing discounts at their company store, Blondee... you are missing out.

      PS. Buy a candy bar? I need to raise funds for the mortgage this month.

      Delete
  9. There certainly is money to be made on insecurities, and not just homeschoolers! There are also people who genuinely appreciate the help. So I get all that. But I also understand the backlash here [smile]. I far prefer to build off the opportunities ahead. I thought Taryn put it really well in her blog post how we got here:

    "When we started [homeschooling], my main motivating factors were fear-based ... Now, my motivating factors are ... the pull factors of homeschooling. ... And we've found that we love this life."

    ~Luke

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love how positive Sonlight is about homeschooling, while somehow not trashing anybody else. I don't know how you manage it sometimes because some things? Are just stupid. :)

      Delete

Non-troll comments always welcome! :)